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Enough is Enough: Gov. Cuomo Discusses the Common Core Task Force

Op/Ed By Howard Eagle


howard newWhat a lying hypocrite. That’s right, I called the governor a liar, and a hypocrite, and I can prove it.

First, someone ought to ask him about those “three great girls” of his, (with Cuomo-and-Kennedy-ruling-class-blood running through their veins), and whom he featured in his YouTube “polit-co-mercial.”

Where did they go to school?

When this ruling class hypocrite talks about “taking action now to fix our schools,” he’s NOT really talking about, overwhelmingly and predominantly, lily-white, middle and upper-class suburban schools, and districts.

Those districts are generally doing well academically and otherwise, and, other than the fact that, last school year, parents refused to allow thousands upon thousands of their little darlings to take the Common Core Exams, don’t really require any “fixing.”

The only thing that needs “fixing” (as far as they are concerned) are the exams, and the specific manners in which they are used. And, we can be absolutely certain that’s about all that will get “fixed” via the work of the “new” task force.

Hopefully, the BLACK COMMUNITY understands that it’s OUR SCHOOLS (overwhelmingly, predominantly black, and brown, urban schools) that really need to be fixed, but the “fixing” goes way beyond so-called standards, and quality and quantity of teacher-evaluation-based, standardized tests.

If the latter referenced problem gets fixed for suburbanites, then it also automatically gets fixed for urban schools, but WHAT ABOUT THE DEEPER, MUCH MORE SERIOUS, AND MUCH OLDER, SYSTEMIC, ISSUES, AND PROBLEMS, such as thoroughly Eurocentric curricula, which by the way, Cuomo and company haven’t mentioned at all (though the so-called task force is supposedly dealing with curricula issues).

Other issues include, the overwhelmingly white, middle class (often culturally disconnected, vis-a-vis the vast majority of students) teachers, and lack of aggressive, so-called “diversity,” i.e., people of color-recruitment-efforts; rampant, racist attitudes, and belief systems on the part of many teachers, administrators, and support staff, union-led resistance to anti-racist education and professional development; and disciplinary policies, procedures, rules, regulations, and practices, which, in many cases, are directly connected to the school-to-prison-pipeline?

Where is the task force that’s going to address these, and other critically important issues?

The hypocritical governor has claimed his task force “will represent every corner of the state of New York.”

REALLY? So, who on the task force represents the students and parents at the “corner” of Genesee and Flint Streets; Plymouth and Columbia Avenues; Portland Avenue and Central Park; Joseph and Clifford Avenues, and other such corners in countless, core, urban areas across the state? Carrie Remis? Right.

Smooth-talking “Andy” has claimed “the basic truth here, is that this is not about politics, not about the bureaucracy, and it’s not about politicians, and union officials.”

HE IS A LIAR. That’s precisely what this is about. That’s right, I called the governor a liar (again), and would tell him so, to his hypocritical face.

He’s claimed “this is about the children.”

It is about “the children.” It’s just NOT about ALL OF THE CHILDREN, and I’m certain that, if we are astute and honest, we know which ones it’s about, and which ones it’s NOT about (based simply upon long-standing, clear, historical patterns, if nothing  else).

Let’s stop pretending, and acting like we don’t know that some children are much more valued (by the powers that be) than others. We do know. And we know damn well it’s based largely upon “politics, bureaucracy, politicians, and union officials,” precisely what the governor has claimed is not true.

Black community, how long will we continue to allow slick, lying politicians, and others to hoodwink and bamboozle us by artificially fusing, and conflating, issues that affect and impact US, almost exclusively, with those that impact, overwhelmingly, predominantly lily-white, middle, and upper class, suburban schools and districts?

Especially since their issues ALWAYS get solved, and OURS NEVER DO? Exactly how much snake-oil, and so-called “reform” are we going to allow people to sell us? It’s been decades, and clearly the issues have deepened, and worsened, with no realistic end, or substantial improvement, in sight.

The efforts of Cuomo’s “new,” so-called task force have NOT been designed to help US in any substantial or fundamental manner. Don’t take my word for it. Just listen to his “polit-co-mercial.” He states that the “agenda of the task force is straight-forward, and clear.” And, indeed, it is: “to overhaul the Common Core system.”

How in the heck does that equate to “FIXING OUR SCHOOLS?” Surely, we are intelligent enough to understand that deep, deep-seated issues and problems, such as those referenced above, have preceded the so-called “Common Core system” by DECADES.

The URBAN EDUCATION CRISIS was full-blown, even under the old Non-Regents, and Regents competency systems of the 1980s, ’90s, and earlier. It’s as if we don’t get it. The fact that massive numbers of our students went from 15 or 20 percent, and frequently lower percentages, meeting or exceeding standards (prior to Common Core), to 5 or 10 percent, or less, meeting or exceeding them now.

And, IT IS STILL A CRISIS EITHER WAY. The idea that we would accept chronic gradualism; minute, incremental, change; and so-called “progress” at this late, historical juncture, literally hinges on insanity.

The conversation about testing, and Common Core standards has NOT been designed to examine the deeper issues, which will NEVER get addressed until and unless those who are suffering the most get organized, and bring forth a deadly-serious, concerted demand for widespread, fundamental change and improvement, which cannot, and will not, be defined by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, or any other slick-talking, grinning, politician.

WE MUST DO IT. NO ONE IS GOING TO SAVE US, BUT US, and that’s the plain, clear, objective truth.